Rotary Club Speaker UT President Joe DiPietro Lays Out 5 Goals He Has Set

Friday, April 4, 2014 - by Hollie Webb

Dr. Joe DiPietro, president of the University of Tennessee, told the Chattanooga Rotary Club on Thursday afternoon, "We need to increase the rate of high school graduates who head to college."

This is a part of one of the five major goals he has set for the university system and its campuses across the state. 

He said, "We have to be able to measure things, to figure out if we're moving the dials.

"

This goal, enhancing educational excellence, includes increasing the graduation rates of current college students. 

He said, "By 2015, we hope to be at 57.6 percent."

Another part of this goal is making it easier for students at community colleges to transfer to a four-year school after two years if they would like to earn a bachelor's degree. 

His second goal is to expand research capacities. According to the University of Tennessee land grant, research performed at the university must go toward providing solutions that enhance life.

He described some of the current studies, which include alternative vehicle research, such as research on extended range electric buses.

His third goal is to continue improving outreach and engagement. He said he wanted the university to connect with more civic as well as state organizations. 

He said over the past few years, the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation has worked with the university to develop a training program for their agents.

Dr. DiPietro said, "This a great partnership between a state agency and our university, and we need to continue to foster these kinds of programs." 

As another part of the outreach goal, he also pointed out that the university system needed to increase fundraising programs so it could become "less dependent on state appropriations."

He said, "Fundraising will become more and more important to us in the future." 

He said the fourth goal is to continue ensuring effectiveness and efficiency. He described vital university programs that can only work because of donors.

He said, "Donors make education possible." 

Dr. DiPietro's final goal is to continue advocating for the University of Tennessee.

He told the club, "We do a whole lot of advocacy in Nashville." 

He said, "The advocacy program is very strong because of our connectivity across the state."

He also mentioned that social media had played a huge part in this throughout recent years, as it allows people everywhere to get involved. He said now more than ever state politicians do not only hear from university officials, but also from residents concerned about the future of the university system.


Former Crockett County Schools Technology Director Indicted

Special agents with the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation have obtained indictments for the former Crockett County School System Technology director, charging the Halls man with theft, tampering with evidence and official misconduct. At the request of 28 th  District Attorney General Garry Brown, TBI special agents, working in conjunction with investigators with the Tennessee ... (click for more)

ChattState SkillsUSA Students Earn National Medals

Chattanooga State’s Tennessee College of Applied Technology students brought home four medals – three gold and one bronze – during the annual SkillsUSA National Leadership and Skills Conference in Louisville, Ky Students earning gold medals in Job Demonstration were Tiffany Hammond, Wildwood; model Kristyn Huskey, Pikeville; and Renee Richardson, advisor. A gold medal in Mechatronics ... (click for more)

Thousands Line Route For Funeral Procession Of Sailor Slain In Chattanooga Shooting; Wife Sings Song At Funeral She Was Singing When They Met

Thousands of people waving flags and signs again lined the streets and highways of Chattanooga for the second of two local funerals for military personnel slain by a gunman on July 16. And at the funeral service for Petty Officer 2nd Class Randall Scott Smith, his wife, Angie, sang the song she was singing the first time they met. She said she was singing "You say it best when ... (click for more)

Chattanooga Man Who Declared He Was "An Innocent Man" On Child Pornography Charges Gets Conviction, 24-Year Sentence Overturned

The Federal Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals has reversed the conviction of a Chattanooga man who claimed at his trial and sentencing that he was wrongfully convicted by a jury of possession and distribution of child pornography. James Paul Lowe had been sentenced in May to serve 24 years in federal prison. After the sentencing, he had bid his family goodbye and told them to ... (click for more)

Chattanooga Strong

The hearts, minds and prayers of Tennesseans, and of the entire nation, have been turned toward Chattanooga this month.  We are sickened and saddened by the senseless tragedy, and we grieve for the families of the five service members who were killed, Gunnery Sgt. Thomas J. Sullivan, Sgt. Carson A. Holmquist, Lance Cpl. Squire “Skip” K. Wells, Staff Sgt. David A. Wyatt and ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Chanie's Puzzling Poem

Ronnie Joice was in a bar in north London when he spied a poem tacked to the wall. The more he studied it, the more it revealed and, suddenly, he was floored. I don’t need to tell you it has gone viral, cheering people up particularly in England, but it is fun to know it was written by an 11 th -grader at an all-girls school in New York. Chanie Gorkin first posted it on her page ... (click for more)